Tuesday 28th March 2017 – Feeder w/ Moses at O2 Guildhall, Southampton

Taking place just under six months since the last time I saw Feeder, this show at the Guildhall was part of the second leg of a UK tour in support of the band’s ninth studio album All Bright Electric. That they could play a fair sized venue such as this AND Portsmouth Pyramids, which is only 20 miles up the road, in the space of a year is a testament to the draw Feeder have as a live act.

The set list was much the same as the show in October the previous year, but I’d enjoyed the new album and was quite happy to get a second chance to hear those songs played live, knowing full well that it was likely only a couple would make the cut on future set lists (not a comment on the quality, just the natural cycle of touring albums). The only real difference other than the venue (and I do prefer Guildhall overall) was that I went to the earlier show with Sam and this show with Ed C and Tom C.

I’d known for a long while that it was inevitable you’d see a Feeder crowd step it up a gear when the band played Buck Rogers and Just A Day, but I think it was this gig that I really noticed just how important these two songs are to a percentage of people in attendance.

Now Feeder are far from a one, or even two hit wonder. Even with a dip in album sales across the whole industry, the band still manage to chart in the top 10. Then there’s all of the singles that were also outright hits. ‘The Singles’ compilation released in 2006 has EIGHTEEN UK Top 40 singles.

Which is why it’s a mystery to me that, not only does a section of the audience seem to hold back until those two encore tracks, but they also don’t seem to be all that familiar with rest of the set (clues; restlessness in the crowd, walking back and forth to the bar/toilet). Gig tickets aren’t cheap. This one was £25, the upcoming tour is £32. Do people stump up the cash time and time again on the strength of a couple of songs? To be fair to them, they are great songs.

Earlier this month I had the insane opportunity of seeing Feeder play to 100 people in the back room of a pub, somewhere near the North Wales border. The audience definitely seemed more engaged throughout and perhaps the sense of intimacy allowed frontman Grant Nicholas to feel he could be honest with the crowd with his comments before playing Buck Rogers. It’s clear that he’s just as baffled by the popularity of that song. He also made a bold statement about the setlist for the upcoming tour. I’ll have to wait until late April to find out if he stays true to his word.

Moses were the support for this Guildhall show. Other dates on the tour had The Tuts. I didn’t mind Moses, but I was big into The Tuts and their album Update Your Brain at the time, so I was mostly just disappointed I was getting to see them again.

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